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Early release for former Israeli PM Olmert

Former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, who is serving a 27-month prison term for corruption, won parole today, one of his lawyers said.

Israel Radio reported that Olmert could be freed as early as Sunday after a parole board decided to cut his sentence by a third, a common practice in Israel for prisoners who have not committed violent crimes.

But the release might be delayed if prosecutors decide to file an appeal, Shani Eluz, an attorney for Olmert, told reporters.

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"He was very excited. He was very happy," Eli Zohar, another Olmert attorney, said of the parole decision. "He hopes very much the prosecution service will not ask to delay his release."

Olmert was found guilty in 2014 of accepting bribes from real estate developers when he was Jerusalem's mayor, before his 2006-09 term as prime minister.

During his original six-year sentence the judge said his corruption offences were tantamount to "treason".

Olmert was sentenced to 27 months after he was convicted in a separate case involving cash payments from a US businessman and for obstruction of justice.

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